Shulin Liang

Graduation Semester and Year




Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Landscape Architecture


Landscape Architecture

First Advisor

James P. Richards


This study examines the relationship between users and open spaces benefits in North Texas. Specifically, it probes the residents' perception of open spaces benefits in master planned communities. The importance of open spaces is indisputable. They encourage the broad range of activity required by our pluralistic urban society with its racial and ethnic groups of all ages, conditions, and needs (Woolley, 2003). To encourage types of activity that help establish a positive pattern of use, landscape architects can develop the form and the character of the open space as a complete subsystem in communities. To help future landscape architects better develop open space, this thesis probes the benefits to the users of open spaces, what will attract them to it, and why they value it. More than 10 percent of the new housing starts in this country are provided in master planned communities (Moudon, 1990). When master planned communities are developed in suburban areas, developers set the environmentally sensitive land aside as open space in order to satisfy the land-usage requirements of permit-granting authorities. As a result, master planned communities often provide open spaces that are of limited use and partially accessible. To address this problem, landscape architects could help create better-designed master planned communities that reflect the wishes, desires, and needs of the residents. Therefore, this thesis explores how well-developed open spaces improve residents' living experience in master planned communities. This research uses qualitative research techniques discussed by Taylor and Bogdan in 1998. This involves making observations and conducting interviews to gather data from residents in three selected master planned communities in North Texas. These data collected from interviewees are used to measure residents' perceptions about open spaces. Finally, because landscape architects can influence the residents' patterns of activity through the use of open space, these research findings expand the understanding of the role that landscape architects can play in improving the living experience in master planned communities.


Architecture | Landscape Architecture


Degree granted by The University of Texas at Arlington